What if my doctor tells me I need to start working out?

Listening to the advice of a medical professional is recommended. Your doctor is most likely telling you to start exercising in order to reduce your risk factors for various adverse health conditions. Exercise has many positive health benefits and amongst these are avoiding conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease. Starting an exercise routine is not easy especially if you have not been active in a long time. The first step is to look at fitness as an intervention. See this as an opportunity for a positive change in your lifestyle. Sometimes we all experience being in a place where we feel there needs to be a change. Fitness is often a path we can utilize to change the direction of our lives towards something better. You can start by adding short periods of physical activity each day such as a ten minutes brisk walk. Then, plan on adding five minutes to your walk each week. Of course, you will have to create a routine and plan that best suits your interests, needs, goals, and physical capabilities. From this starting point, you will be able to incorporate higher intensity exercises and a variety of activities. Eventually, you will want to include a combination of static stretching, aerobic work, resistance training. It is also to remember that fitness is not confined to the traditional gym exercises--you can also find other ways to add in physical activity. If you prefer more social settings, take dance lessons or join a hiking group. Small additions of physical activity can make a big difference.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.